Pain Physicians Can Utilize Random Urine Tests to Reinforce Proper Opioid Use

Magdalena Anitescu, MD, PhD, assistant professor of anesthesia and critical care at the University of Chicago Medical Center, suggests pain clinicians may be able to utilize "opioid contracts" with patients to prevent drug misuse and abuse, according to an Anesthesiology News report.

Opioid contracts can include random urine testing, which patients would agree to undergo. The study, led by Dr. Anitescu, tallied how often pain patients improperly used prescribed opioids, whether intentionally or unintentionally, over a three-month period. Patients' compliance to proper opioid use was then monitored after new policies were set in place, including random urine screening. Results showed compliance rose from 48 percent to 74 percent, and positive urine samples decreased from 12 percent to 9 percent.

Read the Anesthesiology News report about opioid use.

Read other coverage about pain management:

- 5 Keys for Pain Management Physicians to Ensure Success in 2011

- 5 Truths and Misnomers About Pain Management in Surgery Centers

- Florida Society of Pain Management Providers Applauds New Pain Clinic Regulations

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